Even a small group can make a big difference helping meet community needs.
The members of the "Pages Book Club" of Richmond have again celebrated the holidays by holding their third annual food drive to benefit the Greater Richmond Interfaith Program.
Members Saundra Alexander, Linda Daigre, Carolyn Dickens, Mary Spearman and Dorothy Stewart collected more than 500 items, primarily canned goods, for the GRIP Souper Center that feeds the needy each day.
GRIP -- a coalition of 45 congregations of all faiths in West County as well as Berkeley, Albany and as far away as San Ramon -- operates an emergency shelter for families along with its soup kitchen. It serves 90,000 meals annually and can still use donations and support.
For details, visit www.gripcommunity.org or call 510-233-2141.
WEST COUNTY NOTES: The Contra Costa Chorale, a fixture in West County for 46 years, invites new singers to join the community chorus as it prepares to rehearse its spring program Mozart Requiem.
Rehearsals, which start Jan. 14, are from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Mondays at Hillside Community Church, 1422 Navellier St. in El Cerrito.
"We've got the building up for sale, and we'll see what happens," said Dolores Bonds, one of the siblings who have carried on the business founded by their parents. "Until it sells, we're going to stay open as long as we can and keep going strong."
Sale hours are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
A blood drive will be from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Jan. 3 at the Red Cross bus in the parking lot at the Starbucks Coffee shop at 1540 Fitzgerald Drive in Pinole.
The Elks Lodge at 3931 San Pablo Dam Road in El Sobrante is hosting a drive from 2 to 7 p.m. Jan. 4.
The Red Cross bus will be at Castrol Premium Lube Express, 3220 San Pablo Dam Road in El Sobrante, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Jan. 5.
Valley Bible Church at 1477 Willow Ave. in Hercules is holding a drive from 12:30 to 5:30 p.m. Jan. 14.
To make an appointment for any of the blood drives, call 800-733-2767. Appointments can also be made online at redcrossblood.org. Enter sponsor code STARBUCKSPIN for the Pinole drive, ELSOBRANTE for the Elks Lodge Drive, CASTROLES for the Castrol drive, or VBC for the Hercules drive.